Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney’s soccer team, Wrexham AFC will unexpectedly be playable in FIFA 22.
One of the more weird yet wonderful stories to come out of the world of Welsh sport this year arrived when Hollywood duo Reynolds and McElhenney became owners of Wrexham AFC, the oldest professional Welsh football club. The team, which currently plays in the fifth tier of the English football league system, has now become a surprise addition to this year’s edition of FIFA.
While the game generally only includes teams as far down as English Football’s League Two (confusingly, the fourth tier of the English football league system) Wrexham AFC has been added to the game under its ‘Rest of World’ category, among other teams that don’t fit into any of the other leagues that the game already includes. Following the team’s inclusion in the game, Reynolds and McElhenney took to Twitter to announce the news in a typical comedic fashion.
This is a statement from the press office of Wrexham AFC regarding #FIFA22
“We’re in the game”.
— Wrexham AFC (@Wrexham_AFC) September 12, 2021
EA sports confirmed in a press release that the company’s partnership with Wrexham AFC will span multiple years, beginning in FIFA 22, with the team available for players to use in kick-off mode. Despite ‘Rest of World’ teams not typically available for use in career mode, previous titles have allowed players to move teams between leagues, meaning that it is likely that players would be able to move Wrexham into League Two should they wish to begin their journey into management with the Red Dragons.
The partnership between EA and Wrexham is set to extend off the pitch as well. According to the press release, EA Sports will begin work in the local community through an initiative with Wrexham Glyndwr University. The company will also provide a community lounge at the club’s stadium.
“It’s great to be partnering with Wrexham AFC and to support the club’s commitments to the Wrexham community and its fans,” said EA Sports VP of Brand, David Jackson. “We’re excited to launch innovative community projects in collaboration with the Club, and for Wrexham fans to experience playing with their side in FIFA 22 when the game releases later this month.”
In addition to the inclusion of Wrexham in its latest iteration, this year’s installment of EA’s FIFA series will also allow you to create your very own team that can be used in the game’s career mode. Player-created clubs will be available in Manager Career mode and can be added to any of the game’s many leagues. When adding a team to a league, your created club will replace an existing club. In an amusing turn of events, the replaced club will then be demoted into the ‘Rest of World’ category where it will join none other than Wrexham AFC.
Jared Moore is a freelance writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter.